Under the Dome

Newest madam justice makes supremely female majority

Barbara Jackson became the court's 96th associate justice in a ceremony this morning in the court's chamber that was attended by a range of high-ranking officials, former justices and her family and friends.

Jackson also helps the court make history: For the first time, women now hold a majority of the court's seats.

The female 4-3 majority was mentioned both by Jackson and Chief Justice Sarah Parker in remarks, reports The N&O's J. Andrew Curliss.

Jackson said it was interesting, but that she doesn't see a majority female court bringing any sort of "quantum shift" to the way the court administers justice.

Jackson, a member of the state's Court of Appeals since 2004, noted that women make up a majority of that court, too. Jackson was elected to the Supreme Court in November.

She took her oath this morning in what's known as an investiture. A reception at the Capitol followed. Jackson replaces Edward Thomas Brady, who did not seek re-election. Following the court's custom, Brady did not attend today's ceremonies.


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I hate to correct the justice, but...

Actually, the Court of Appeals no longer has a majority of women -- because Justice Jackson left that court to join the Supreme Court, and the governor appointed a man, Judge Thigpen, to fill her seat. There are now 8 men and 7 women on the Court of Appeals.

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